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Author Topic: 02/22/2010 IGF Balance Changes  (Read 33335 times)
Ross Przybylski
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« Reply #15 on: February 24, 2010, 11:18:36 AM MT »

Good points, diesbudt, but I think I’m feeling ok with the Sorceress’s +1 Dice and +1 Damage.  She’s meant to leverage a lot of power from Destruction- and the +1 Damage doesn’t happen until you have 15 Valor which means you can see it coming and attempt to stop it by eliminating the Sorceress or reducing her Valor accumulation with proper positioning.  I disagree with restricting which cards her +1 Damage works with (its overcomplicated and unfair with other heroes whose abilities work with all spells in school).

Also, while she is technically the strongest damager at 5 (with the free lightning) this only occurs if she’s putting herself in melee, which, in most cases, she will not survive long.  Her 2 Strength attack should really be viewed as a Defensive or finishing strike.  Still, maybe her Lightning spell should cost a card (seeing as Summoner skeletons can no longer attack immediately)?  If so, I feel she’d favor better off with something that could attack a single visible unit (vs. having to be on a linear path as with lightning bolt).

Likewise, with the Psionist… I know you feel she seems too weak, but again, she’s another unit I don’t intend players to use in melee (her attack should be rarely used and only in desperate situations).  You raise a good point about the 14’s or better on Psychic Blast, though.  With the reduced Defense, this should be 13’s or better to keep the same effect.  Personally, I’d still take her over the Rogue, even with the chance of fail on Mind Control (which I’m considering reducing the penalty to 20% or 25% vs. 30%).

I think the 3 dice meteor shower is still pretty huge (especially with reduced Defenses where you’re more likely to damage).  It’s also good for quickly accumulating Valor (especially in free for all).  The range of Seeker Missile limits its nuking factor.  The closer you bring Sorceress to units, the greater the risk on her life.  A reduction to 3 dice is not a bad idea, though.  What do others think?

Regarding Wizard- dare I suggest giving his Meditate at 10 Valor?  This might be too good.  The better option, I feel, might be to exemplify his strength with Manipulation over other mages.  Hence, I’m leaning back towards 2 mana on Gateway.  Read the new card text again to see how this differs from original meaning:

Remove a wall from any space on the board.  Return the wall at the end of the first turn its space is unoccupied.

It can now be used as an escape spell or as a permanent opening depending on how you play.  I agree, we don’t want players removing walls and fireballing first turn (this was not the intent, at least for non-Wizards).  I’ll reduce the failure rate for Sleep to match Psionist Mind control.

Also, I think Mana Surge is useful again at 1 mana with Destruction update (this gives you enough to teleport and fireball for Sorceress, teleport and Disintegrate for Wizard, or teleport + attack + seeker missile for Fighter Mage).

I’m very hesitant to increase unit life cap.  This was one of the possibilities I tested before I posted these changes; it drastically throws off the entire game balance.

Let the discussion continue, this is generating many good ideas!
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diesbudt

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« Reply #16 on: February 24, 2010, 12:04:56 PM MT »

With seeker missile, I suggested 3 dice because (if you still plan reverting ice shards to 3) it would be on par.  1 mana for 3 dice + special (can go around los objects). And yes, with summoner not being able to attack with skeletons right away a 1 card discard is what I was going to suggest (especially now since l.bolt costs 1 mana).

I wasn't wanting wizards valor abilities to switch, I was more thinking equalize his def with sorc and summoner at 13.

also hex, maybe this would be cooler as a -1 strength permently? I still am not a fan or +1 and -1 armor spells (at 10 valor, with +2/-2 I agree its nice).

I just don't want to see +1 damage from sorcs ability abused on disentigrate:  5 dice and if only 1 hits a unit takes 5 damage... 3 units will die to 5 damage with the rest only 1 damage away.) and with lower def... 1 dice will almost definitly hit.

Also I like the 4 dice fireball for 2 discards better than meteor 'sprinkle'

(i propose you to rename it meteor sprinkle since its at 3 dice).

What about what I said about the earth elemental earlier? since only 2 units have above 15 def. his new ability seems kind of underpowered except vs shield, which I think just more dispells would be better

And yes, changing psis MC to 25percent and Mind blast to 13 def. would satisfy me. .
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diesbudt

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« Reply #17 on: February 24, 2010, 12:11:35 PM MT »

wait, does this gateway mean a unit can stand on that spot now? So it is actually a weaker spell now?

 I found the gimmick where a unit could not stand on that spot useful once in a while when needing to get away from melee units.

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Ross Przybylski
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« Reply #18 on: February 24, 2010, 01:04:18 PM MT »

I’m liking the concept of 1 mana for 3 dice + special.

What about:
x2 Ice Shards (1): Roll 3 attack dice, stuns if at least 1 dice hits (alternatively if 2 dice hits)
x2 Lightning Bolt (1): Roll 3 attack dice on target unit and units in between on same linear path
x2 Seeker Missile (1): Roll 3 attack dice against target unit up to 8 spaces away
x2 Fireball (2): Roll 4 attack dice against target unit and all units surrounding target.
x1 Disintegrate (3): Roll 3 attack dice against adjacent unit.  If any dice hit, unit loses exactly 4 life.
x1 Demonic Lash(2): Roll 3 attack dice against target unit.  If any dice hit, unit loess exactly 2 life.
x1 Meteor Shower(2): Roll 3 attack dice against all visible enemies.
x1 Blizzard(3): Roll 3 attack dice against all visible enemies, stuns if at least 1 dice hits.

The one dice reduction in Disintegrate makes it a harder gamble.  The Sorceress will still do 5 damage if she hits, however, she’ll need to be adjacent to the unit and won’t be able to combo with Teleport like the Wizard can.  So, the caveat is- “Don’t get in melee range of a 15 valor Sorceress who could have Disintegrate unless you can defeat her.”

The sorceress’s 5 Valor Lightning will now cost 1 card (which, again, is still cheaper than casting lightning bolt since you’re not discarding a spell + paying mana).

Summoner’s Defense has actually been reduced to 12 since her higher skeleton cap now encourages her to hide and let her minions do her dirty work.  I’d be willing to adjust the Wizard’s Defense to 13 if we discover its needed after play testing (he should have an easier time surviving than before even at 12 since he doesn’t have to worry as much about being pegged by Destruction spells and Summons).

You raise a good point about Earth Elemental.  What if dice rolls of 13 or better are converted to 20s?  The concept is that he’s crushing you between his boulder-like hands.  Medieval armor is good at deflecting blade attacks but is vulnerable to strong blunt attacks (when the armor is bent/cracked, it actually has a better chance of wounding its wearer).

For Gateway- yes, this change would entail a unit could stand on this space.  The reason for the change is in response to new players’ confusion as to what gateway does.  Originally, I wanted it to have some tactical purpose, even if there were no walls around (to block melee units, i.e. the gimmick you mentioned).  In the newer version, the gateway closes at the end of your turn if you don’t have a unit standing on it.  Therefore, a Wizard who’s trapped in a room could open gateway, walk through the opening, and let it close- making it impossible for his pursuers to follow the same route.  Or, you could open a wall, stick a heavy defense unit in there, and use that open wall to repeatedly fire at enemies on the other side.

One problem with my proposed idea is that the Gateway effect is currently tied to the caster (you can actually dispel gateway if you cast Dispel Magic on the caster).  I’d have to remove this feature with the changed version; otherwise you could trap units in walls.  Maybe it’d be simpler to just have the gateway always close at the end of the caster’s turn?
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« Reply #19 on: February 24, 2010, 01:31:53 PM MT »

I like all the new destruction changes. 2 dice hit for stun (this way it is harder to stun since it can still do damage (unlike sleep, which is just a chance to stun). Otherwise, I concur on these changes of destro spells.

 The problem still is, if I put a warrior unit on that spot, and my hero dies on my opponents turn?  what happens to the warrior?

and if it auto closes after your turn, 2 mana would seem too much, for such a small use. Yes it is a 'run away spell' now... but so is teleport which is more effective at same mana cost.

Otherwise, the destruction spell changes, and sorc l.bolt change looks wonderful.

The earth elemental? so basically he is a melee psionist mind blast right? since his X+ rolls equal 20 and psi's mind blast reduce targets def. to X.

Wait, since summons cannot attack first turn now (besides air), would it be an idea to remove the passive ability 'short attack' from the smaller golems and skeletons?
« Last Edit: February 24, 2010, 01:57:58 PM MT by diesbudt » Logged
Ross Przybylski
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« Reply #20 on: February 24, 2010, 02:29:20 PM MT »

If you had a Warrior on the gateway and your mage died, the gateway would still remain since the condition of the spell is "until the end of a turn the space is unoccupied". 

Having thought about it some more, however- I think I'd rather try out just having the gateway close automatically at end of turn (cannot end move on gateway space) as this will be a much easier change to make.  Plus, it's still vastly different from Teleport because it can also be used offensively.  For instance, a Wizard can cast Gateway for 1 mana and Fireball an entire team- since the Gateway closes at the end of turn, the opponent cannot retaliate (unlike if the Wizard had teleported).  Plus, other units can move through the gateway (teleport only moves your own mage).  Since there's no visibility requirement for Gateway, it can be used to get other friendly units behind walls and into defended areas.  The fact that it closes end of your turn, I feel, makes it immensely more powerful since only you can benefit from its effect (not your opponent).

For 2 mana, it's a very powerful spell, and for only 1 mana for the Wizard, it's exceptional.

I'll agree to 2 dice hit to stun; I plan on tinting stunned units blue as a future interface feature so it's easy to tell when they've been afflicted.

Earth Elemental is actually stronger than the Psionist since he'll still hit lower Defense units at their natural Defense.  The Psionist always checks against 13 regardless of Defense.

I like removing Short Attacks (it simplifies the game overall), but I think we should play test before making that change since it will throw off the balance of the other elementals.
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diesbudt

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« Reply #21 on: February 24, 2010, 02:41:13 PM MT »

fair enough on the gateway, I guess this would help solidify the wizard being the manipulation master.

I like the blue stunned idea, I know some new players have sat there for 30+ seconds wondering why they can't do anything with x unit.

Also, with the summons cannot attack on turn of summoning. Is it an idea to remove unsummon?  Any other card, you pay mana cost and get its effect. (augu-buffs, destro-attack, resto-heal, and sleep-chance to attack.). But with the summons now waiting a turn, it would be unorthadox to spend 3 mana on a summon creature that is killed by a 1 mana card before it is even used.

(ive decided to bring only 1-2 questions/opinions per post so I don't write an essay each response.)
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« Reply #22 on: February 24, 2010, 03:12:48 PM MT »

After reading the changes posted, I have to say that it seems like everything is getting nerfed. The way that MMORPGS and games have had success is making things balanced is through buffing the underused classes or abilities and bringing everyone up to a higher level of awesomeness. Bringing everything down, hindering abilities, making them less die, chance of failure sounds like it would dilute the game experience.

I do agree with the more life and lower defense, that's either a break even or a slight buff to everyone, but taxing spells or character's abilities isn't the way to go. If you kept on this path, then every new character that comes out would have these severe limitations to be 'meh'.

I would boost abilities or characters instead of nerfing. Instead of making spells weaker in abstract, make mages defense versus them better? If mages are getting one-shotted, give them some sort of way to stop that...such as maybe a defensive 5 valor ability. So far the summoner has the only defensive valor ability, and one flesh golem spell in the entire deck. These are just ideas, but I know I would rather play with uber powerful spells/guardians/mages than people who fail 30% of the time or roll over to getting hit with spitballs.
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Ross Przybylski
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« Reply #23 on: February 24, 2010, 03:37:23 PM MT »

Also, with the summons cannot attack on turn of summoning. Is it an idea to remove unsummon?  Any other card, you pay mana cost and get its effect. (augu-buffs, destro-attack, resto-heal, and sleep-chance to attack.). But with the summons now waiting a turn, it would be unorthadox to spend 3 mana on a summon creature that is killed by a 1 mana card before it is even used.
A Dispel Magic can wipe out all enchantments on a unit for only 0 magic.  Though, you make a point in that you technically get at least one turn to leverage that attack.  Unsummon is definately more useful now, but I'm not sure it's too powerful- it puts the game back in your favor if your opponent invests in a summon and places them in line of sight.  It's primarily there to level off pesky units like Flesh Golems, Iron Golems, and Crystal Golems.  Summoners will have to be cautious where they place their creatures.

(ive decided to bring only 1-2 questions/opinions per post so I don't write an essay each response.)
No need to hold back...by all means, speak your mind.
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Ross Przybylski
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« Reply #24 on: February 24, 2010, 04:20:25 PM MT »

After reading the changes posted, I have to say that it seems like everything is getting nerfed. The way that MMORPGS and games have had success is making things balanced is through buffing the underused classes or abilities and bringing everyone up to a higher level of awesomeness.

I can understand why you feel that way.  On first glance, the changes do seem to imply “nerf”, but really the decrease in dice rolled is being offset by the decrease in Defense, resulting in a balance shift rather than a decrease in power.  Also- it’s not the mages getting killed easily that was the problem; but the way damage was being distributed in massive bursts and annihilating any character without the opportunity to react.

It’s difficult to compare Hero Mages to the typical MMORPG.  Our stats system was built to function like a board game with very small numbers meant to be calculated with simple dice rolls.  Most MMORPGs use much larger damage scales and have characters with many hit points (sometimes hundreds or more).  For their system, it’s much easier to increase stats and damage because they can simply add more hit points and armor.  Hero Mages is strictly limited by the twenty sided dice (Defense caps at 20) so in our case it makes sense to shift the system the opposite way.

I’m attuned to your point though- players want to feel things are “better and more awesome” and not “everything is weaker”.  That’s why the Summoner is getting the ability to conjure up a horde of skeletons vs. only 1 at a time, the Fighter Mage is getting more augmentation spells, the Wizard is getting new manipulation spells, and other characters are getting new or revamped abilities.
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« Reply #25 on: February 24, 2010, 04:49:18 PM MT »

Maybe make unsummon cost no mana (merge it with dispell, have 2 in deck) and instead of killing a summoned unit, it kills a summoned unit at 1 hp. meaning skeletons and iron golems are vulnerable, but the others require a little fight done first, that way even if they don't get a chance to attack, it diverted some dice/attacks to them.

Also... soul reavers taunt. I still cringe at such a huge change. losing both an hp and def. maybe add another effect on taunt  (the opposing unit's attack rolls below 20 get -2 to the roll, as if taunted a person would attack more in anger than in skill).

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Ross Przybylski
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« Reply #26 on: February 24, 2010, 05:58:39 PM MT »

Not sure about Unsummon yet.  But, I am pretty excited about Soul Reaver!  It still amazes me that you're not liking her... 4 dice attack, 15 Defense (which is exceptional coupled with her nice attack).  I love the fun that can be had with Taunt vs. Duel, and it adds so much more to her personality.

Your idea about the added Taunt effect is interesting, but it'd be simpler to either raise her Defense or her Life by 1.  According to the Battle Simulator, the effect of making either change gives her an equal increase in her chance of winning the battle.  She does slightly more damage per turn with the increased Defense, however, as expected by the increased frequency of counter attack.
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« Reply #27 on: February 24, 2010, 06:18:48 PM MT »

well I suggested the -2 attack because 15 defense, most attacks that use 3+ dice has a better chance to hit than not hit. So to actually get me to want to waste a card to have her get a unit to attack her that might attack her next turn anyways at no discard...something more is needed.   +1 defense would be perma and affect all attacks (im just wanting it to affect the taunt attack).  (and I did check to see 1 def is equivalent to -2 on the dice.)

Like I said, I just don't like discarding a card for absolutly no reason. I don't usually plan  my hero to be near enough to most units for them to reach him, so the only targets my opponents guardians will usually hit is the soul reaver, or other unit, which if I was afraid to lose it, it also would be distance away from the guardians.

So all I see this ability as, is a sprint luck attack. Which, isn't a smart move to sprint 1 unit into your opponents' clutches.  (basically as I said, I'd basically be discarding a card for something that will happen next turn, and if he buffs his unit's attack to attack the reaver, that's less 'ammo/mana' my opponent has to aim at my hero that turn.

I just don't like it, unless it gets something more.
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diesbudt

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« Reply #28 on: February 24, 2010, 06:21:37 PM MT »

Let's not forget, taunting a rogue is useless.
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Ross Przybylski
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« Reply #29 on: February 26, 2010, 03:05:53 PM MT »

Let's not forget, taunting a rogue is useless.

Not so.  Say your opponent was down to their Rogue and you had a Mage left with only 2 life, Taunt could easily win you the game by redirecting that ranged attack, saving your Mage to cast spells another turn.

After more deliberation, I've decided to keep Soul Reaver's Defense at 16 and reduce her life to 5.  This lends more to her Counter Strike ability, but leaves her susceptible to Defense banes, Inspire, Earth Elemental, and high damage Destruction spells.  Additionally, she has a natural weakness against the Rogue (make sure to turn off her counter strike in the Battle Simulator when fighting the Rogue to see the difference it makes).
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